Thursday, May 31, 2007

ONE more day!

Okay, I thought the blog I did last night, would be the last before we left. But...God has really been speaking to me, so I am going to tell you about it. Tues. night at our college Bible study, we talked about putting things before God. I have realized that I put my family before God. It is so easy. I realize that I don't trust God to do what is best for us. I worry about their safety and focus on them way more than I focus on God. NOT that loving my family as much as I do is a bad thing. God desires that from me. He commands that from me. But...where I am failing, is that I am not loving God MORE than I love them. He doesn't want me to love them less, He wants me to love Him more!! I guess since losing the baby in November, I have been afraid that God would take someone else I love. I haven't trusted Him. When I was reading my Bible on the deck yesterday, I looked out into the tree and saw two woodpeckers, male and female (the red head on the male gave it away). The male was picking out bugs or something from the branch and putting them into the females mouth. He flew off to another branch and the female continued to get her own food! She was capable! He came back and gave her more. He was taking care of her even though she didn't NEED him for food. I started thinking about how God is like that. I go on living my life, taking care of my family and doing all that I know to do. I'm capable! But, God knows EVERYTHING I need. He gives me MORE than I could ever hope for or think to ask for. He is MORE! I don't have to put my family on the back burner, in order to put Him first! I just have to see HIM for who HE is! MORE!! I thought with my family, I love them because I spend time with them, I serve them, I look to see what they are doing each day, I talk to them. I realized that I am not spending the time with God that he wants to spend with me! I haven't been watching to see what HE is doing each day. Sure I help with the Bible study, and I pray and read the Bible, but not because I'm trying to know Him more or love Him more. It's usually because I need to show someone else a scripture or teach a class or RITUAL! I am reading John right now. Just because I want to LOVE God more. I am excited to TRUST Him with what is BEST for our family.
He is MORE!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

42 hours 'til TAKE OFF!

I can't believe the mission trip is almost here! God has truly blessed us already! We have seen Him work in amazing ways. I've realized that some of you reading this blog don't know the story behind this trip. Here's the scoop. Tennessee has a partnership with the missionaries in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. 8 years ago, Kent decided to start taking teenagers from across Tennessee on a mission trip to Rio. The teenagers must be 15 years old. This would have been the first year that Jared would have gone. Our plan was to take him then take Maci in two years and then Molly, two years after that. Well, the missionaries, Ray and Sharon, are retiring and Tennessee will be starting a new partnership somewhere else. Because of the relationships we have formed with them and some of the translators, we wanted our children to get the chance to meet the people that we have grown to love so dearly. This is our last year so we decided to take all of our kids at once. The Brazillian people are so open to the gospel. It is a life changing experience that we wanted them to be a part of. We know that God doesn't NEED us to reach these people, but we feel so blessed that He has allowed us in the past and is now allowing our children, to be used by Him to enlarge His Kingdom. We are still in awe that this is going to happen. Thank you so much to all of you who have given to help us either by donating money or buying t-shirts. What once seemed like an impossible dream, is really taking place. We know that this is a "God thing". Thank you to those of you who have commited to pray for us while we are gone. We are leaving Friday at 4:30 from Nashville and flying to Houston. We leave there at around 9:00 pm and will arrive in Rio Saturday morning at about 10:00 am.
We'll do our best to keep this up daily! Thanks again!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Our 18th Anniversary!

WOW! Today is our anniversary. I can't believe I've been married that long. Kent is still my best friend. I still get excited to see him everyday when he gets home from work. I still get all giggley when he says sweet things to me.
I was thinking today about how when I'm down about myself or I think I should look a certain way, Kent always assures me that he loves me as I am. I'm blessed to have true love. Love that endures all things. We've been through a lot. A lot of joy, a lot of pain, but we've always grown closer to each other in the end.
Our relationship with each other is only possible because of our relationship with our Savior, Jesus Christ. We had a song at our wedding called "We Three Make One". I still think of that when I describe our life together. We have only grown closer during difficulties because we have grown closer to God.

Today, I am thankful, not only for a husband who loves me, but for a husband who loves God, first. I am thankful to have a husband that I know will always lead me and our children in our spiritual walk. He is truly all I ever dreamed my husband would be and much, much more.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

15 DAYS!

Count down has begun. The kids went and had all their immunizations updated last week. I was worried about the cost because our insurance doesn't cover well child visits. Someone told me about Mercy Children's Clinic in Franklin! It is the BEST place. The people there are amazing. The kids all had to have new rounds of immunizations, tetanus and MMR and all the normal stuff, they also got Hep A and B. They had complete physicals (cough, cough for Jared) and they only charged me $40! I loved the doctors and nurses. We were there for about 3 hours. Normally that would be miserable, but they made it seem like the best place to be. We went to Mellow Mushroom afterwards and felt we had just had a fun family day! If any of you need a pediatrician, GO THERE!

We still have to do a little shopping. We have to wear bermuda length or longer, so the girls and I could use another pair of shorts or capris and Jared needs some more shorts. Maci still needs a new pair of running shoes. You have to wear closed toes shoes so if you accidentally step in the sewage that is running down the streets, you don't get a parasite. Anyway, then we'll be ready! I can't believe it's almost here and we are REALLY getting to go!! "Thank you, Jesus for all that you have provided and the doors that you are opening for our family."

HE'S HEALED!

Okay, for all of you who were truly worried about Kent, he's much better today! I admit, I was a little worried. I do know that Kent has ZERO pain tolerance though. I really did try to get him to go to the doctor, but after watching him fall on Sunday and do the "tuck and roll" once he hit the ground, I figured he would be hurting at some point. I had to give him the TLC that he was craving, just in case I was wrong and the life insurance went into play. But, thanks be to God, his heart is fine and there is now no sign of a tumor taking over his chest.

Thanks to those of you who were so concerned. He thrives on the sympathy.hehe

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Birth Certificate Crisis!

Wow! We got a call from the travel agent today. She said she had never seen this happen before, but...the Brazillian consulate (sp) had called and wanted a copy of Jared, Maci and Molly's birth certificate. They have their passports right now for the visas. Kind of scary. Out of 60 other students, I don't know why they want our kids birth certificates? Any ideas?

Anyway, I went to the church and faxed them and then was home about an hour and the travel agent called and said that Maci's didn't go through. So I called David Ebensberger and went over there and re-faxed it. IT DIDN'T GO THROUGH AGAIN! Finally on the 3rd time, it went through. I was starting to think maybe Maci was going to Grandma and Papa's for 10 days! ha.

I was so excited to have 4 comments! I didn't think anyone would REALLY read this. I guess I'm going to have to get it going. Thanks to Jamie Ivey!! You are amazing! She came and set all this up for me! I was a little clueless on all of this! Kent and I will get it all figured out and try to keep you up on everything over the next few weeks leading up to our trip. (And of course, while we're on our trip.)

Oh, pray for Kent. He wants me to tell you that he is about to die. He thinks he is either having a heart attack or has a very large tumor that is taking over his chest. Yesterday afternoon, he started having heavy pains in his chest. It hurt to breathe. He couldn't hardly sleep last night and stayed home from work today. He took down the kids playhouse this weekend and built a retaining wall in our backyard. While holding a shovel, he fell off some boulders and landed on his side and rolled down the hill!! I think the muscles were pulled or something and just took a day to catch up and hurt. I did try to get him to go to the hospital. He won't. He made us promise that if he died from this, that we would all still go to Brazil. He said that was his final wish. Poor Baby.
Thanks again for reading,
Shawnah

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Going to Brazil!


We're off to Brazil for a mission trip with the TN Baptist Convention on June 1st for 10 days. This blog was created to keep you up to date on our preparations and our time there.